Wellington – Bangladesh
coach Steve Rhodes said his charges were relishing being underdogs as
they chase a maiden victory over the Black Caps on New Zealand soil on
The tourists have never beaten the hosts in any format during four
previous tours to New Zealand, but Rhodes said they should not be written
off ahead of the first one-day international in Napier on Thursday.
“We know it’s going to be very difficult, we’ve got to be realistic,” the Englishman told reporters.
“But we quite like being underdogs. We can surprise a few people
being an underdog and I think New Zealand know they’ve still got to play
some very good cricket to beat us.”
Rhodes said Bangladesh’s task had been made tougher by the
injury-enforced absences of all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan and paceman
He said the gruelling Bangladesh Premier League Twenty20 tournament
had been a mixed blessing for his players as they prepare for a New
Zealand tour that includes three one-day internationals and three Tests.
“It’s been a hard grind but a great competition as well (with) lots
of positives in terms of experiencing tough cricket,” he said.
“But it’s taken its toll and the preparation is not ideal. I only hope that on the day we show that we can play some cricket.”
While his players were battle hardened, Rhodes said they must be wary
of a New Zealand side still smarting from a 4-1 ODI series loss to
“I think they’ll use those bruises to bounce back and we’ve got to be ready for a tough New Zealand turning up,” he said.
Bangladesh are still buoyed by their own 2-1 ODI series win over the
West Indies in December and Rhodes said his side was far more
experienced than those that previously toured New Zealand.
“It’s a really big task but it doesn’t mean we can’t win,” he said.